UCLA and KCET, the nation's largest independent public television station serving Southern and Central California, announced they have joined together to offer a public service special called "Countdown to Carmageddon: The 405 Closure" to inform Southern California residents and visitors about the shutdown of the Interstate 405 freeway scheduled for the weekend of July 16–17.
Produced by UCLA's University Communications and Public Outreach department, the 30-minute program is scheduled to air on KCET as a special broadcast of the award-winning news program "SoCal Connected." The first airing is set for Wednesday, July 13, at 8 p.m. The show will repeat at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, July 15.
"Countdown to Carmageddon: The 405 Closure" presents the reasons for the freeway's 53-hour closure and the unprecedented steps ordered by public officials to avoid severe traffic delays across the region. The program will also explore the potential long-term benefits to commuters of modernizing the freeway.
The program details the impact of the 405 shutdown through informative graphics and discussions with senior officials of Los Angeles Metro, the California Highway Patrol, the Los Angeles Police Department and UCLA, one of the largest employers in the closure zone.
Interview subjects include local residents and business owners, a radio traffic reporter, a top transportation researcher, and Los Angeles cultural observer and kcet.org contributing writer D.J. Waldie.
Kevin Roderick, director of the UCLA Newsroom and a regular commentator on Los Angeles, narrates the program. Matt Boatright-Simon, director of the UCLA Broadcast Studio, is the producer. The production team includes Sebastian Hernandez, Christelle Nahas, Alison Hewitt and Todd Schindler.
Additional coverage of the 405 closure will be posted at the UCLA Newsroom. Follow the Newsroom Twitter feed for updates.
KCET: On-air, online and in the community, KCET plays a vital role in the cultural and educational enrichment of Southern and Central California. KCET currently produces the Emmy, duPont–Columbia and Peabody awards–winning "SoCal Connected," a hard-hitting prime-time weekly television news program that examines the issues and people of Southern California. Throughout its more than 40-year history, KCET has won hundreds of major awards for its local and regional news and public affairs programming, its national drama and documentary productions, its quality educational family and children's programs, its outreach and community services, and its website, kcet.org. KCET is a donor-supported community institution. More than half of the funds raised to support KCET's operating budget come from individual support. For additional information about KCET productions, Web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit kcet.org.
UCLA is California's largest university, with an enrollment of more than 38,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The UCLA College of Letters and Science and the university's 11 professional schools feature renowned faculty and offer 328 degree programs and majors. UCLA is a national and international leader in the breadth and quality of its academic, research, health care, cultural, continuing education and athletic programs. Six alumni and five faculty have been awarded the Nobel Prize.